I was admitted to hospital on a Tuesday ...

Asked by Richard on 15-07-2020 11:40:11
Question posted in the Malpractice Law category relating to Free State

I was admitted to hospital on a Tuesday due to a low blood count. I was supposed to receive a transfusion on Tuesday night and released the following day. I paid an up-front fee for the trearment.

The nurses in the ward mixed up the patients and until I queried on the Wednesday why a doctor had not been to see me yet, I was told there had been a mixup with the Doctors and patients. I then saw a Doctor on Thursday afternoon, who acknowledged the error. He then prescribed that the transfusion should take place right away and I should be released on the Friday.

Before the treatment began, I received a call by the Hospitals accounts department requesting that I deposit another R6000.00 .

I then expressed my unhappiness with the treatment I had received and queried why I should pay for the hospitals mistake and asked to see someone in management. This never happened.

I was then given the transfusion starting at midnight on Thursday night, through to 10:00 am on Friday. Whilst waiting for the Doctor to discharge me, I was again contacted by the accounts department and asked to deposit R12000.00. I again expressed my dissatisfaction with my treatment. On my discharge, I went to the front desk where I was approached by a person with a hand held card machine, who asked me for the R12000.00. I then asked to see someone from management and was approached by a lady who informed me that she had been informed of the mistake and advised me not to pay yet, as they would reassess my account and let me know the result. She agreed that I should not pay for the hospitals mistakes. Today I receved an sms from the hospital demanding a payment of R11498.48. Please advise as what action I should take.

Answer to the Question

Posted by Att. Patrick on 15-07-2020 12:32:51

Hi there and thank you for your question,

I am a practicing attorney based in South Africa and I will assist you with your question. Please feel free to ask as many follow up questions in order to clarify your question. If you have a new question, you must please open a new thread.

I think that you need to contact the hospital and set out the facts that happened, as per your message above. Also, include a statement that the hospital made a mistake in mixing up you as the patient, and that you refuse to pay for additional time in hospital when it was not needed.

Also, and this is important, you need to include the discussions with the management lady who agreed with you that you should not pay the R12,000. Explain that this was the hospital's management agreeing with you, and essentially the hospital has already agreed to write off that R12,000 figure. So, it is too late for the hospital to now demand payment from you. 

You need to get this in writing to the hospital so that you can use it as proof for the future.

If there is a part of the answer which you need more advice on, or clarity please continue in this same thread instead of opening a new question.

Att. Patrick

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